He’s filthy rich. He’s flat broke. He’s a Black Muslim. He’s still a Jehovah’s Witness. He’s a child molester. He’s a innocent man.
It’s the Dangerously Bad Thriller, but is he Invincible or just Off the Wall?
He’s Michael Jackson and he’s baaaaaaaaack.
At least he is if you live in London. The 50-year old “King of Pop” emerged from his seclusion to announce he would be performing 50 concerts at the O2 arena in London.
The concerts begin on July 10 and end February 24, 2010. The arena seats 23,000 and estimates are over a million people will see Jackson perform.
The Wikipedia entry for “This Is It,” the title of what Jackson is calling his “final curtain call” breathlessly exclaims Sales of Jackson’s albums increased following the press conference. Overnight, sales of Off the Wall rose 200%, Bad rose 110%, Dangerous rose 165% and Thriller rose 155%
Well, la-di-da. I’m not mad at Michael J. for moving some of his back catalog, but the most recent of those albums, Dangerous, is 18 years old.
Jackson’s last release of new material was 2001’s Invincible, a double-platinum seller, but one without a Number One single for the self-proclaimed King of Pop.
I never bought or listened to Invincible because by 2001, I was totally burnt out on Michael Jackson’s non-musical antics. Just as Tom Cruise’s couch-jumping and Scientology rants had turned off his fans and his subsequent movies underperformed, I was so sick of Jackson I didn’t even want to hear his music anymore. I didn’t care if he was innocent or guilty. All I wanted was him to get his decaying face out of mine.
The tour organizers promise, “dramatic shows [that] promise an explosive return with a band of the highest calibre, a state-of-the-art stage show and incredible surprise support acts.” It’s that last part that grabs me. “Incredible surprise support acts.” Who’s going to open for a 50-year-old Michael Jackson? The even more ancient Rolling Stones or The Who? Well, Mick Jagger is a whore for money. Maybe Mick and Michael can revive their “State of Shock” duet?
Ugh. Maybe not. More like “State of Suck.”
But if I were living in London and the ticket price wasn’t too outrageous, I’d probably go to what might be my last chance to see Jackson performing live.
Mostly because I don’t think he can. We’re talking about a scary-skinny, sickly and increasingly fragile pop star i with a surgically enhanced hip who hasn’t performed live on a major level since the HIStory tour in 1997. Jackson has too much pride and ego ever to go the route of a oldies act playing at state fairs and frankly he’s still big enough of a star to command (and get) millions to go onstage.
But really the desire to see Jackson performing after all these years and facial surgeries is the perverse pleasure of sitting in the front row and catching his nose when it flies off after he does a quick spin. He may still be able to moonwalk, though not very far or very long and he probably needs a good eight hours of sleep afterward.
I don’t wish bad on Michael Jackson. In his time, he gave me a lot of enjoyment and his first four solo albums still sound pretty good even now. Nobody stays on top forever. It just takes some guys longer to realize it’s time to get off the stage.
Even writing about Jacko makes me feel old. Once upon a time it was “Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough.” Now it’s “Please Stop ‘Cause I’ve Had Enough.”